Saturday, January 12, 2013

#BDSFail as Gaza farmers visit Israel

From YNet:

Some 30 Gaza farmers participated in an agricultural expo held in the Eshkol Regional Council last week, despite the hostile relations between Israel and the Strip's government, run by Hamas.

"Agriculture knows no borders," said Uri Madar, of the agriculture department in the District Coordination Office (DCO). "There are various parasites that can 'jump the border' so there is a clear mutual interest here. If things are calm on the security front, there is no reason not to boost agricultural and economical ties."

"Gaza exports produce to Europe every day," Ahmed Shafi, head of the Gaza City Agricultural Association told Ynet. "We export peppers, strawberries, flowers, cherry tomatoes and spices."

Since Operation Pillar of Defense came to its end, Gaza has exported over 200 tons of strawberries, 130 tons of tomatoes, 5 tons of herbs and spices and a million tons of flowers.

The Strip's farmers say they have no problem doing business with their Israeli colleagues. "We want to keep coordinating exports with Israel and even export to Israel," one of the farmers who visited the expo told Ynet.

"We don't look at this from a political point of view. We – and you – look at it from a business point of view."

Another farmer said that Hamas' government leaves the farmers to decide on their own who to do business with. "There's no coordinating with Hamas – only with Israel and the Palestinian Authority."

The goal, others said, is to reach the agricultural export levels noted prior to Hamas' takeover of Gaza, and to export produce to Israel and the West Bank as well.

Israel used to be Gaza's best and biggest market. The Palestinian farmers said that even if Egypt opens the Rafah crossing to exports from Gaza, they would still prefer to export their goods through Israel, because they trust Israel's facilities more.

"We were able to do good business here," a Gaza farmer told Ynet after the expo, adding that there is more to Gaza than militants and rockets. "We make a living and create jobs. And when the economy is good, people are happy and there are no political problems."
This validates Netanyahu's emphasis on an "economic peace" with the PalArabs.

The BDSers are absolutely livid when Palestinian Arabs cooperate with the hated Israelis - for their own self-interest. They have written bizarre articles arguing that these sort of initiatives that directly benefit Palestinian Arabs are terrible. Of course, the real reason they fear economic peace is because it disproves their entire argument that they are "pro-Palestinian" and shows them to be nothing but hypocrites.

In order to justify their hypocrisy, the BDSers will trot out fake "agricultural associations" that they say are against cooperating with Israel.

Palestinian agricultural organisations and the Palestinian BDS National Committee call for the launching of worldwide campaigns on February 9 against Israeli agricultural export corporations in light of their deep complicity in Israel’s ongoing violations of international law and Palestinian human rights.

Endorsed by:

Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee
General Union of Palestinian Peasants and Cooperatives
Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees
Palestinian Farmers Union
Popular Struggle Coordination Committee
Stop the Wall
Union of Agricultural Work Committees
Union of Palestinian Agriculture Engineers

A look at the "Palestinian Farmers Union" webpage shows virtually nothing about farming - practically every article is denouncing Israel. They never even explained their vision and mission, because it would have exposed their real agenda, of being a front for an anti-Israel group.

Similarly, the Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees has an explicitly anti-Israel political agenda as part of its strategy.

The Union of Agricultural Work Committees was created as an anti-Israel group, and their logo shows this pretty explicitly.

These "agricultural organizations" do not do a thing to help Palestinian Arab farmers, and are political fronts to make it appear that there is a broad-based opposition to economic cooperation with Israel. They don't represent anyone.

In reality, Palestinian Arab farmers will happily work with Israel to succeed - and the BDSers try mightily to hide that simple fact.